FOREST Green fans will switch ends from the North Stand to the EESI Stand this season to give Rovers players a boost before kick-off.

Until now Rovers players have walked out before kick-off to be confronted with a wall of sound from opposition fans, who have been situated just metres from where the teams emerge from the changing rooms onto the pitch.

Work has already begun this week to remove seats from the EESI stand and covert it to an all-standing terrace for home supporters.

Chairman Dale Vince said: "The main reason for the switch of ends is to put home fans where they should be and that's at the 'heart of the club' near the changing rooms where players are preparing for the game. The players have told us it sometimes feels they are walking out at an away game because they emerge and hear the visiting fans first.

"This should improve the atmosphere and bring our fans closer to our players."

Additional benefits will be to increase stadium capacity to 5,000, which is required should FGR achieve promotion to League Two.

Also putting away supporters in the North Stand will make it easier for visitors to negotiate The New Lawn. Coaches can drop off opposition fans next to the ticket office and park outside the North Stand, just feet away from where they are watching the game.

Vince added: "For home fans it will be a shorter walk to and from the Green Man and we are hoping to eventually have a bar for our fans at the EESI stand as well.

"And our fans will now have their backs to the wind and the low winter sun out of their eyes. "It's quite a big job, converting it from seated to standing, but another major improvement at The New Lawn."

The North Stand will remain a standing terrace for away fans.